Best Friends AnimalSociety: bfnetwork@bestfriends.org
Important News Brief: September 9, 2005 : 1:14 PM ET
From Paul Berry:
Concerning New Orleans

We had two teams out on boats on Thursday. Troy Snow has written about his crew in an earlier posting. Ours was similar, so I’ll keep this brief. Our team was me and Dr. Debbie Rykoff DVM. Also aboard and helping out was a crew from the Salt Lake Tribune. Leah Hogsten took photos for the Trib and gave these to us.(Thanks, Leah.) The thing I want to say is simply that there are thousands upon thousands of animals stuck out here, on car roofs, on porches, cats on roofs of houses. We saw no other animal rescue orgs anywhere.

I know they’re all doing good work on the peripheries … but, oh man … you see and hear these fluff pieces on TV of people being reunited with their pets, and you look around out here on the boats at this vast, endless wasteland of toxic water and animals hanging on, 11 days after the hurricane, and their time is running out. What on earth is going on? Why is no one out here to help them? We’re just on two boats. We heard about a veterinarian who is on another boat. We need a whole freaking navy! This is the story that’s not being told. Animals clinging to life, and dead human bodies lying and floating all around.

Please call your local media and tell them to get on to this. We just got a call from German TV – ZDF, and they’re trying to hook up with us for today’s marathon on the water. The only other boat we saw yesterday was an airboat from Fish & Game. They were scouting the ground behind. Rumors are they’re beginning to shoot the animals today. I believe these stories are now true. That’s what’s going to be happening.

IMMEDIATE ATTENTION: WE NEED ALL THE OTHER ANIMAL RESCUE ORGS TO BUY/BORROW BOATS AND FOCUS ON THIS.

These animals only have days at most, and are clinging to life. They are the forgotten ones. We can only manage about 10 at a time. They’re emaciated, starved, dehydrated. It’s literally “water, water everywhere and not a drop to drink.” Dr. Debbie revives them in the boat as they start to lose consciousness and gives them fluids. All those we took yesterday have survived. Keep us in your prayers, Paul. Call Gov Blanco's office (I-866-310-7617) and ask them to get the National Guard to start rescuing the animals. I also warned that shooting the animals is unacceptable will not go over well with Americans. The receptionist agreed with me. The receptionist taking my call said she was getting "a lot of requests" to rescue the animals so maybe we can finally get some action. Keep working on this everyone. We can make this happen if we all pull together!! Keep up the calls since they refuse to give out the governor’s e-mail address.!!!

The governor’s web site:  http://www.gov.state.la.us/govemail.asp